From a single post and a handful of readers, The HotLine Magazine has warmed up considerably over the past ten months. There are now regular readers from more than 70 countries around the world and all 50 states of the USA. From Hawaii to Georgia, the Maldives to Sri Lanka, Slovakia to Senegal, the Ivory Coast to Ireland, Austria to Australia, Support executives and C-Level officers alike are looking for answers and insight.
Years ago, Ken Shevock, then the VP of Worldwide Support Operations for Cisco, commented “Nobody is really ‘winning’ at Support. We’re all doing the same things to try to keep up, but to get to the next level, we’re going to have to do something new.” The HotLine Magazine is about that “something new.”
The Worldwide Audience
Each hour, the major search engines bring people to the site. “First call resolution and customer centricity” brought a new reader from Nigeria early this morning. References about “Typical software firm organizational structure” was the concern of someone in India last night. “Process consulting Oregon call center,” “long term profitability in a customer contact center,” “support levels saas,” “professional fee cost vs. support,” “voice of the customer contact center,” “call center technology with centricity” — the list grows constantly. Both the questions being asked and the frequency of requests show that the struggle to re-vision the customer contact center is becoming ever more important to companies.
An Active Resource
The HotLine Magazine is an active resource. The second article, published in March of 2007, “The Cost of a Call ,” remains amongst the most popularly requested pages today with its direct challenge to Senior Management teams: Is this happening in your center? ” The Definition of Customer Support ” has drawn readers nearly every day since its release last May. “To Succeed in a SaaS World ” (April, 2007) sounded a warning call that still attracts eyes and concerns, the end of Break/Fix is coming fast towards us all. The entire library of published articles is in constant demand. Customer Centricity, changes in contact center technology, the rapidly developing ecosystem of Software As A Service and the lessons we still haven’t learned from the past all are still fresh and vital interests.
The Shape of Things to Come
2008 will bring further changes, both to the industry and to The HotLine Magazine. I’m working with a team of senior support professionals and technology vendors to create specifications for center management technology, tools that will enable executives and companies to profitably manage their contact center resources and to make effective use of their wealth of marketing data for the first time. I’ll be speaking at several conferences this year, beginning in March with SaaSCon 2008 in Santa Clara, CA, and moderating a panel on Customer Retention at the SIIA’s On-Demand Europe conference in Amsterdam.
A series of operational resources for contact center professionals is in development and will be made available here in the coming weeks. And my direct consulting work with companies and their customer contact centers will continue to provide topics and appropriate questions for more articles. Stay tuned, there’s lots more to come. In the meantime, feedback  is always welcome.